Communications minister Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams has appointed Basil Ford as administrator of Usaasa, the government agency charged with bridging the digital divide in South Africa.
The appointment comes after the minister withdrew the name of the previous candidate, Newyear Ntuli, after it emerged he had been accused of serious sexual misconduct while working for his previous employer, the South African Post Office. Ndabeni-Abrahams said she wasn’t aware of the allegations when she named Ntuli to the role.
Ford, an engineer with a bachelor’s degree from Wits University, worked for almost 20 years at the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC), where he was responsible for investing in various companies in the media and broadcasting space. Ford has managed R2.3-billion worth of such investments, the ministry said on Wednesday.
Ford has a BEng (honours) degree from the University of Pretoria and completed the Executive Development Programme at the Gordon Institute of Business Science.
“As the executive caretaker, Ford will assume the dual role of the organisation’s accounting authority and accounting officer,” Ndabeni-Abrahams said.
The minister surprised the ICT sector in December when she announced she was dissolving the boards of both Usaasa and the State IT Agency (Sita) and appointing administrators to run them for the next 24 months.
Luvuyo Keyise, previously chief technology officer at Ithala, another state-owned company, was appointed as the administrator of Sita for a 24-month period from 1 January. — (c) 2020 NewsCentral Media